Archive | August, 2012

August updates from the garden

20 Aug

So we’re coming up on the end of August and the garden has:

  • lots of Painted Lady butterflies;
  • newly planted (as of tonight!) mixed lettuces (in the small bed we have a variety including oak leaf and mesclun; in the cucumber trellis bed we have arugula and a Chinese variety) . . . also curly leaf kale tucked in between the tomatoes in the small bed;
  • mysteriously ailing tomatoes (what is causing those leaves to brown?) . . . at least we’re still getting some fruit, thanks mostly, I think, to Deb, Allison, and Shari’s tireless work and fertilizing;
  • eggplants growing beautifully (!!), thanks to Deb’s careful tending in her kitchen many months ago when it seemed so unlikely that they would make it;
  • lots of delicious cucumbers (harvest them!);
  • carrots and dill growing slowly, baby broccoli leaves mysteriously eaten but the plants have given up yet, one flowering watermelon vine, chard in full splendor, some remaining beets continuing to grow;
  • herbs (sage, thyme, oregano, mint, lemon balm, lavender and basil) waiting to be harvested;
  • happily harvested beans thanks to Jamba Juice — lots of kids had fun picking them tonight, mostly yellows, but some greens, and purples mostly yet to come;
  • strawberries (do we have a harvest plan for these?  I’m not sure how much longer the kids can hold off eating them . . .); and
  • new slides next to our garden (the link is to a time lapse video of the first chunk of the build — which shows how much digging there was! — the video stopped an hour or so into the build); as of tonight, we planted grass seed planted on the dirt hills surrounding the slide area and mulched with hay (the grass/hay is just a stopgap solution to encourage some minor grass root growth and keep kids from running on the dirt . . . so we minimize erosion until we can get taller grasses planted in September).

Anyone who can get the linked swarm build time lapse video downloaded to post directly here is welcome to do so; my computer wouldn’t let me.  Who knows why?

Let’s make plans for an early September harvest party . . . somebody with an iphone should take and post some pictures of how things look now for posterity.

From August 4th: The Slide Swarm Build!

14 Aug

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Thanks to Rusty Keeler of Earthplay for helping us make it happen and to Ora Berman of Site Insights for the pictures and helping us build!

The slides are in . . . but plants around them are yet to come!

4 Aug

After a day’s work, the slides are in, and the play area will re-open tomorrow evening at 5pm with a “grand opening” ceremony that involves pizza and kids and a raffle to see who gets the first slide rides (concrete needs to set for 24 hours). Lots of pics of the work today, and — assuming all went well — some time lapse photography of the build, and those will be posted at some point. But for now, you can see below a vague visual of what we’re hoping for after we plant some tall grasses and maybe other plants on the remaining bare dirt. We’re planning to plant in September, when it’s not quite so hot.

Don’t the plants complete the look?

Qs From The Jamba Juice/National Gardening Association End Of Project Survey

2 Aug

Please start thinking about these questions from the Jamba Juice Award End of Program survey.   I’ll write the essay, but it really helps to have quotes from kids.  Ask the kids and fellow participants about what they like about the garden, how having the garden changed their spring and summer routines, what they would say about their garden in show n tell, etc.

Photos are needed, too.  I’ll bring a release to pizza night sometime soon.  Give me a heads up if you don’t think you’ll want your or your child’s image included.  Thanks!  -Denise

1.

Please indicate whether or not you witnessed any participant improvements in the following characteristics that you would link to your gardening program:

Improvements in:

Scholastic achievement, attitudes toward school, attitude toward environment, attitude toward nutrition, improvements in social skills, improvements in self confidence, improvements in community spirit, improvements in leadership skills, improvements in volunteerism, improvements in motor skills.

2.

Please elaborate on the impact of your gardening program. Be as specific as possible and include quotes from participants if appropriate/available.  For student quotes cite first name and ages of children only:

 

3.

How many hours per week, on average, were participants involved in gardening activities?

4.

How many total volunteer hours were contributed to your program?

 

5.

Approximately how much money was spent on your gardening program this year?

Choose one of the following answers 

6.

What was the approximate value of in-kind donations to your garden program such a soil, plants, other garden resources, etc.?

7.

Please describe any obstacles or challenges your garden program faced:

 ESSAY Q:Please provide a description of your garden program, including the size and scope (how many children are directly and indirectly involved), where you are located and what you grow, and any innovative aspects of your program.  In your essay please consider the questions below:Ø    How has your gardening program impacted your students and your community?  What aspects of your program are you most proud of?What are your hopes for the future of your program?How has the grant program donation made a difference at your school?

 

 

 

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